Comedy review: Sofie Hagen: Dead Baby Frog

Edinburgh Festival Fringe: In her autobiographical comedy shows Danish comic Sofie Hagen always tries to tell the truth. Previously Hagen has made shows about her anxiety and depression and the steps she has taken to manage it.

Bedlam Theatre (Venue 49)

****

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In Dead Baby Frog she goes back to the source – to tell the story of how she decided to confront the step-grand-father who made her life 
hell.

In Denmark, she tells us, lots of families have a Nazi grandfather. And there are other uncomfortable secrets which need to be brought to light.

It isn’t a story full of drama and exciting events and there is a lot more to the story which Hagen is not yet ready to talk about. But what she does is travel to the core of the emotional interraction which allows an adult to manipulate a child.

As a storyteller Hagen is absolutely mesmerising. Her style is deceptively simple but her directness and honesty take us straight to the heart of the matter.

We are there with her, a little five-year-old girl being told terrible lies. And we understand how hard it was for her to feel angry about it and why it took years for the anger to finally emerge.

We laugh as she tells how the unlikely story of how a meeting with the members of Westlife finally helped her find her voice.

There are lots of funny stories in this show but at its heart is a willingness to tackle deep and painful issues head-on.

Hagen actively encourages others with severe anxiety to come to her gigs and does everything she can to reassure them. The trigger warnings may seem over the top but they are there for a reason.

Sofie Hagen is a brilliant comic story teller, but the truth is a powerful thing.

Until 28 August. Today 2pm.